Monday, January 30


At a time when revolutions are born in cyberspace and global thought is summarized in hashtags, the artist is in limbo: empowered by a supposed democratization of culture but now rendered more placeless (useless?) than ever. And in the advent of a worldwide expression of rage against greed, who else but the artist must sound the alarm?

The Philippine Collegian, the official weekly student publication of UP Diliman, is now accepting submissions for its upcoming literary folio. Short fiction, poems, essays, and graphic fiction in English and Filipino are welcome. We are also accepting photographs and artworks.

Email your submissions as an attachment (.rtf for texts and .png or .jpeg for images, at least 300 dpi) with a short bionote to or bring them to our office, Room 401 Vinzons Hall, UP Diliman. The deadline for submissions is March 15.

Marjo and I will be editing! With help from Jayson Fajarda and Caloy Piocos. Submit!

Thursday, January 19


  • Just (b)reached 14,000-word mark on this thing I'm doing. Length-wise, this already satisfies requirement for fiction class, and it's only January (final portfolio due end of March). Bibo, Glenn, bibo. But it's good to know am doing this for personal reasons. That's good, I think. To have a project outside the (v. minimal) things on plate. Of course, will never go around saying, I am working on a novel, because that just reeks of ambition, something can't say I possess. And sounds pompous, too.
  • Why I Write / What I Write About Essay due next week. Think might be easy, as will involve mostly masturbatory shit (can be stream of consciousness mode and will be valid form). Although somehow dreading it too because do not have childhood epiphanies of the Oh my God, I want to be writer! variety. Do remember typing out journal entries in an old school typewriter all the time. Also, hope that token mention of Country will not be contrived.
  • Thinking about how stories take shape and direction. Can characters really "run away" and "have minds of their own" in manner of Frankenstein monster? Are they clearly formed already even before they act out the first gesture or utter the first line of dialogue? Or are they, from the beginning, already subsumed under a (subconscious) design in one's head, only taking shape as the story goes along?
  • Am wary of gutfeel-gutfeel mode in this manner because it is too easy.
  • Will be editing upcoming Kule literary folio. Watch out for call for submissions and submit! Theme will most probably be Occupy-related, as the defining call for this generation.
  • First raket of the year coming in way late. I know more are coming because of annual report season. But to be honest, starting to feel guilty about sleeping-in-til-noon-then-coming-down-only-to-eat-lunch itinerary of late. Mother not saying anything about it, but sometimes things unsaid ring louder than, say, "Hoy batugan ka, maghanap ka na ng trabaho!" That said, there will be a job fair at school on February 1st. Will probably check it out. But you know: I most probably will not.
  • Will turn 26 in less than a month. Not sure how I feel about this.

Saturday, January 14


On Monday, a deadline I had anticipated and for which I actually prepared will elapse. I am kicking myself for missing it. And saying sorry. Over and over. In earnest. Such had been an ongoing lesson: what to do with things that are abandoned halfway, and how does the self deal. Especially considering that such have, maybe unfortunately, become lampposts / buoys / paperweights in one's currently floating, centerless state. That said, is true what they say about doors closing and windows unbolting ajar, as something scheduled for Monday that can potentially be good. Not a good start for 2012, Glenn. Please temper your optimism, as is usually most ideal.

Sunday, January 1


I've since realized that the waking up scenes in what I write betray my preoccupation with one Mr. Samsa; the journeys (on the MRT, the bus, the plane, in distant locations), perhaps a natural reflex to feeling boxed. 2011: a year that was, for so many great reasons, blessed:

1. Silliman
The war-era bus. Noisy and reliable, and really, what can compare to seeing it approach the pick-up bay in Robinsons Dumaguete and you thinking, hey there's our ride.

  In the city's paved roads, you sometimes long for a little instability, for wayward branches of trees to invade open windows...

... and the familiar laughter and counsel, and poetry in the morning.

In the Dumaguete airport, waiting for the boarding call you wish would never come.

2. MA still on track

A jeep on campus, because it is becoming harder and harder to leave this place.

Because really, how does one leave UP and its pristine mornings?

3. Going back to guest-edit for Kule

Red Horse by the sea in San Narciso, Zambales during Kule's consolidation activity.

 Venn diagram-ing "paghihintay" and "pag-asa" during the post-Christmas party nightcap, a.k.a., Overthinking and Why We Are Perpetually Depressed

4. Davao raket

 Boxes of pomelo and priceless first-hand information on the state of education in the ARMM from mayors and aid workers themselves, which leads us to -

5. Freelancing

Breakfast by the sea in Pagbilao, during one of the rakets that thankfully made 2011 - the first full year of doing freelance full time - bearable and really not so bad.

Lunch by the Hundred Islands, after futile attempt to scale a muddy mountain wearing skinny jeans and suede shoes

6. CDO and Philline 

Rafts atop a jeep in Cagayan de Oro, during the best vacation of the year, aside from the Bacolod-Sipaway-Iloilo trip with Om in February and the nice gastronomic weekend at LB with the golden couple and Christian.

Tuscany. Echos. Bukidnon, thanks to our host Lina Sagaral-Reyes.

Best work station in the world.

7. Bonding with self

Most trips this year were solitary walks, as freelance and single had been key words; being alone is not so bad, really. Coming to terms with things. We usually have fun.

 Especially with this big girl (wearing an oversized Che shirt of all things), who accounts for why Jollibee clips are bookmarked on my laptop

And books.
8. Writing
The whole point of not working full time is so could devote more time to writing. Not sure if year's worth of output is enough and justified. Also not sure how to explain the lola-style balabal in this picture.

And because I am too tired to think of a comprehensive wisdom for the year, here's something from David Nicholls' novel One Day.

"Travelling," she sighed. "So predictable."
"What’s wrong with travelling?"
"Avoiding reality more like."
"I think reality is over-rated," he said in the hope that this might come across as dark and charismatic.
She sniffed. "S'alright, I suppose, for those who can afford it. Why not just say 'I'm going on holiday for two years'? It’s the same thing."
"Because travel broadens the mind," he said, rising onto one elbow and kissing her.
"Oh I think you’re probably a bit too broad-minded as it is," she said, turning her face away, for the moment at least.
They settled again on the pillow.

Now to go back to idle on the bed with this wonderful, wonderful read.